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No IAY houses constructed in 19 Odisha dists this year

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Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Feb 11:

Not a single house has been constructed under the flagship centrally sponsored Indira Awas Yojana (IAY) scheme in as many as 19 districts of Odisha in the current financial year, Panchayati Raj minister Arun Sahoo informed the state Assembly on Tuesday.

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In the current fiscal, Odisha has been allocated 52, 966 houses under Indira Awas Yojna (IAY). In Baleswar, 30 houses have been constructed out of 7, 341 houses allotted to the district under the scheme. Out of 5, 988 houses allotted to Baragarh district, only one house has been constructed. Construction of 15 houses have been completed out of 5, 707 houses sanctioned in Cuttack district by December end. Similarly, only 101 houses have been constructed in 11 other districts in the state. In the remaining 19 districts, construction of not a single house has been completed, Sahu said.

Notably, Jagatsinghpur district hasn’t been receiving any Central aid under the scheme for the last three years.

In a reply to BJP MLA Dilip Ray’s question, the Panchayati Raj minister said, 10, 75, 616 houses under Indira Awas Yojna (IAY) have been allotted to Odisha from 2008-09 to 2014-15 out of which only 7, 67, 239 houses have been completed so far. Construction of the remaining houses is either yet to be completed or hasn’t taken off at all.

It may be recalled that the state government had launched an ambitious low-cost housing project for the poor with an investment of around Rs 20,000 crore in the next five years last month. The government aims to construct 5 lakh houses in a year under the ‘Biju Pucca Ghar’ and ‘Indira Awas Yojna’ which works out to 25 lakh houses in five years.

The state government has no data on construction of 3 lakh IAY houses in the last 7 years and around Rs 912 crore has been lying unutilised in the state treasury, sources said.

With the state government putting the data on records in the House on the progress of housing schemes, the tardy pace of work has raised concern over completion of projects by the end of this fiscal with hardly two and a half months remaining.